Concluding the Junior European Judo Championships in The Hague, Netherlands was the Mixed Team event.
Georgia vs France
The +70kg were first up, yesterdays silver medallist in the -78kg category, Morgane RUBIANO (FRA) took on Nino PAPIDZE, thirty seconds in, Rubiano used a high cross grip from Papidze to attack with an ippon-scoring o soto gari to put France in the lead. Shalva GURESHIDZE, the 2022 and 2023 junior European champion in the +100kg demonstrated his prowess, evening the score with a signature ura nage after one minute. This team match up was moving quickly, but slowed right down for the -57kg women, Nino LOLADZE (GEO) and Alya DE CARVALHO (FRA), the latter took silver in these championships. De Carvalho may have been on the podium and helped her team to the semi final today but she simply didn’t have an answer for Loladze, instead picking up two shidos. After numerous close attempts, Loladze finally managed to deepen her grip to pull De Carvalho in close enough for an o soto makikomi, scoring waza ari and holding her opponent to complete the ippon.
With a 2:1 score to Georgia, they welcomed their -73kg junior European champion on to the tatami, Giorgi TERASHVILI, who battled Eliot PREVE (FRA), scoring initially with uchi mata and then at the two minute mark with a harai maki komi. Now the score was 3:1, the tension was great as was the pressure on Eter ASKILASHVILI (GEO) to take the fourth and final win. It was a very tough contest against France’s Lila MAZZARINO, who took the win in the end with a determined ko uchi gari. Once again, Georgia went in for the match point as France initiated the chase, Tamaz KOBERIDZE the Georgian hope went up against David ALI and endured yet another long contest. Golden score began, but only 13 seconds in, a morote seoi nage from Koberidze put his team in to the final.
This is a historic final for the Georgian team at the junior level and you could tell in their celebration what it meant to them.
Netherlands vs Germany
Following yesterdays performance by the Dutch team, they were understandably on a high. Leading the charge in the semi final against Germany was the -78kg gold medallist, Lieke DERKS. She was confident, nonetheless struggled against Mathilda Sophie NIEMEYER. The pair went in to golden score and eventually Derks scored following a nerve-racking clinch, but she managed to take control and used te waza to score 28 seconds in. Daniel UDISLAURI (GER) was tasked with winning the +90kg contest to level the score, and he did just that, a ko soto gari securing the win with just under a minute left on the clock.
The -57kg competitor for the Dutch team, Julie BEURSKENS, put a score on the board first, entering for kata guruma but not making it fully through, scoring waza ari. Helene RIEGERT (GER) was on the back foot in this contest, and eventually lost after a second attack, a seoi nage from Beurskens, which ended the head to head. Quentin VAN DER VEEN (NED) has been on a roll today defeating some of the top athletes in the category and finally, Levi MAERKT for a place in the final, getting the submission from san gaku.
Finally securing their place in the final against Georgia was Nadia SWINKELS, a sasae tsuri komi ashi was initially awarded waza ari, but on reflection was celebrated as an ippon.
Competing for the bronze medals are Portugal against Germany and Azerbaijan against France. The final block will begin at 15:00 on JudoTV.com.
Author: Thea Cowen